My Dear Dokdo | Islands of Korea

John Lopker

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Released 09/26/2022
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My Dear Dokdo | Islands of Korea by John Lopker is licensed under a Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
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The island grouping at the centre of a diplomatic dispute between South Korea and Japan is known by several names.

South Korea calls it Dokdo, which means solitary islands. Japan calls it Takeshima, which means bamboo islands. And it has also been known as the Liancourt Rocks, named by French whalers after their ship in 1849.

Both Japan and South Korea claim the islands, so too does North Korea.

The islands themselves consist of two main islands and about 30 smaller rocks. A South Korean coastguard detachment has been stationed there since 1954.

Both Japan and South Korea say they have long-standing historical ties to, and claims over, the island grouping.

South Korea says Dokdo was recognised by Japan as Korean territory in 1696, after a run-in between Korean and Japanese fishermen.

The island grouping was formally placed under the jurisdiction of Uldo county in 1900, it said, but annexed by Japan in 1905 ahead of its colonisation of the Korean peninsula.

Dokdo was rightly restored to Korea after World War II, it says. "Dokdo is an integral part of Korean territory historically, geographically and under international law."




My Dear Dokdo, Geon Gon Gam Ri
We sing a song for you today

My Dear Dokdo, said the Sky
Islands of Korea, lifting spirits high
Blue or gray, clear or cloudy
Your soul springs from our Taegukgi

My Dear Dokdo, said the Earth
A Korean volcano gave you birth
Day and night, dark or light
Your mother keeps you in her sight

My Dear Dokdo, said the Moon
Your shores hum an old Korean tune
The tides strumming as they fall and rise
Waves drumming a rhythm so wise

My Dear Dokdo, said the Sun
You can’t be claimed by pen or gun
With circle on cloth, a stranger came
A hungry moth to a Hanguk flame

My Dear Dokdo, said them all
Korean islands standing tall
Korean land, forever one
Said the Sky, Earth, Moon, and Sun

Instrumental No
Explicit Radio-Safe